A Series of Webinars to reflect on possibilites for a new world.
The REVIVE web series of discussions began during the COVID 19 lockdown, as an informal chat between friends who were working in the sustainability space, as a way to share each others work and learnings. It slowly grew to include students and other professionals and cover a whole range of topics addressing the inner and outer crisis facing humanity currently.
This series is hosted by the eCoexist Foundation.
The intention of this series is to help people connect – to themselves, to each other and to Nature.
The quality of the connection we aimed to create was deeper than just a list of achievements or a technical transfer of knowledge – rather we wanted to know more about the journey each speaker had been through and the lessons they had distilled from these experiences. The REVIVE series was meant to inspire more than inform, to give people the courage and restore their faith in a new future, to REVIVE their spirits during a time when human society was hitting an all time low.
The foundation on which the REVIVE talks is based and the criteria in the curation of content, is the vision held by eCoexist, that the inner environment within us is deeply connected to the outer environmental situation we find ourselves in and that human health and environmental health is one united issue.
In this context, the REVIVE series encourages a deeper questioning of the choices that each one of us makes as individuals and whether we can indeed turn these around to create a new paradigm.
Parallel to this process of inner reflection and discussion , we believe that as a community we must be able to translate our learnings into informed action on the ground. From the talks, a few other initiatives emerged that could enable this action.
STUDIO MEDICO HELD is a center for Integrated Medicine with over twenty years of experience located in Roma, Italy.
Consultation, diagnostics and therapy are personalized to the specific individual needs. Dr Michael Held has a background in Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM) and Buddhist philosophy and will be speaking to us about how the mind can channel the healing forces of Nature consciously.
Paracelsus, a Renaissance physician during the 1500’s said, “Nature is the first physician, and man is the second”.
That statement is still true today. The unconscious processes follow the “nature within us”, but each of us can optimize this self-regulation within oneself and it is precisely in this area where modern medicine, modern psychological disciplines meet with experience-based medicine, traditional knowledge and meditation techniques.
The Positive Medicine approach is based on a relatively new scientific field called Psycho-Neuro-Endocrino-Immunology (PNEI), the most systemic modern medicine framework.
How can humans and animals coexist in the same habitat? How should our cities be planned to accomodate for other living beings? What should our attitude towards the animals who share our space be?
We hear about animal cruelty inflicted by individuals who despise animals, but over 15 years of working with animals has shown me that even individuals who like animals ever so often end up hurting them as much, and most often it is a case of misguided compassion. Sometimes, love can hurt.
We will be talking about:
-Human-Animal Conflict in Urban Ecosystems
-Irresponsible Pet Ownership
-Random acts of kindness that cost animals their lives!
The Timbaktu Collective (www.timbaktu.org) has stamped its presence in a clear operational area of 182 villages in the drought-prone and ecologically challenged Anantapuram district,Andhra Pradesh, amongst 25,000 marginalised families. It has so far established 13 community-owned and managed Cooperatives in order to demonstrate a model of local production, consumption and distribution. These alternatives have the potential to facilitate a vibrant local economy based on ecological sustainability, fair trade, and social and economic inclusion.
For 25 years, Charles McNeill has been a leader in the United Nations’ work on sound environmental management for sustainable development in the developing world. Previous to his current position with UN Environment, he managed UNDP’s programs on forests, biodiversity & ecosystems, climate change mitigation & adaptation, sustainable energy, stakeholder engagement, the MDGs, SDGs and public-private partnerships.
He founded/led many global initiatives, including the:
• ‘The ‘Interfaith Rainforest Initiative’ (www.interfaithrainforest.org)
• ‘Indigenous Peoples Initiative for UNFCCC COP 21’ to ensure IPs made an unprecedented contribution to the Paris Agreement in Dec 2015
• Global coalition of gov’ts, businesses, NGOs & IPs that delivered the Forests Action Area of the UN 2014 Climate Summit, and COPs 21, 22, 23 & created the ‘New York Declaration on Forests’
Some weeks ago, the tragic death of a pregnant elephant in Kerala broke our hearts and captured our attention. But this is not an isolated nor rare event. The Asian elephant populations in India, have been steadily declining while elephants in Africa grow in numbers. We need to do something about this NOW! As part of our celebrations of Ganesh Chaturthi, the eCoexist team is running a crowd funding campaign to raise funds for elephant conservation. These monies will be sent to Assam, to a project led by Nandita Hazarika called The Assam Haathi Project. This session is about the work that goes into ensuring that both elephant and humans stay safe.
The sense of the sacred inspired by natural features, mountains in particular, has a crucial role to play in programs to preserve cultural and biological diversity. In a presentation illustrated with striking images, Edwin Bernbaum describes two projects that have taken this approach: one, to restore a sacred forest at Badrinath, the major pilgrimage shrine in the Indian Himalaya; the other to nominate Mount Kailas in Tibet and the pilgrimage routes leading to it from India and Nepal as an UNESCO trans-boundary World Heritage Site.
Edwin Bernbaum, Ph.D., is Co-Chair of the IUCN specialist group on Cultural and Spiritual Values of Protected Areas (CSVPA) and Senior Fellow at The Mountain Institute. A scholar of comparative religion and mythology, his work focuses on the relationship between culture and the environment. His book Sacred Mountains of the World won the Commonwealth Club of California’s gold medal for best work of nonfiction and was the basis for an exhibit of his photographs at the Smithsonian Institution.
The talk will focus on the history, experience and challenges of environment regulation in India, locating it within the questions that confront both citizens and governments during an economic crisis.
Kanchi Kohli works on environment, forest and biodiversity governance in India. Her work explores the links between law, industrialization and environment justice. Her research interests also include the implementation of biodiversity regulations in India.
She has authored various publications, research papers and popular articles. She co-edited the book Business Interests and the Environmental Crisis (SAGE-India). Since 2004, she co-coordinates an Information Dissemination Service on forest and wildlife cases in the Supreme Court of India. She co-edited The Case for the Commons, a six part e-publication on the administrative follow up of the 2011 Supreme Court of India judgment on the protection of the commons.
Crises often catapult us into action. But what is this activism based in ? Is it coming from fear, panic and anger?
In this REVIVE talk, Satish ji will speak to us about what action we can take as a response to the COVID crisis … but more importantly, what motivation should inspire our actions. Perhaps this is what Gandhiji would have encouraged us to do , to find that space of love within ourselves and serve from this inner space of peace.
As we struggle to translate our realisations from COVID into a new direction for our lives and work, how can we craft a life of elegant simplicity ? Not just for ourselves, but for all our fellow beings.
How do we teach the next generation about the beauty and importance of Nature, when they are living in disconnected urban environments? Can the schooling system of education develop a deep sense of sensitivity and empathy for Nature within our children? Does the new National Education Policy of 2020 enable this? How will speaking in our mother tongue and multi disciplinary teaching create ecologically aware generations?
Kartikeya Vikram Sarabhai is one of the world’s leading environmental educators and a dedicated community builder. He was awarded the Padma Shri, India’s fourth-highest civilian award, in 2012.Sarabhai is the founder and director of the Centre for Environment Education headquartered in Ahmedabad, with 40 offices across India. He is closely involved in the activities of the Nehru Foundation for Development, of VIKSAT and of Ahmedabad’s Vikram Sarabhai Community Science Centre. He is also a trustee of the Sabarmati Ashram Preservation and Memorial Trust, and of the Physical Research Laboratory (PRL).
Vishwanath Srikantaiah, is a water activist and has been working in the space for over 34 years. Mr. Vishwanath was a columnist for The Hindu for 12 yrs, and wrote weekly columns about water preservation. A Civil Engineer, and Urban & Regional Planner by profession, he currently teaches at the Azim Premji University as Adjunct Faculty
Vishwanath has been working with a community of traditional well diggers to revive this skill and build recharge wells to direct water back into underground aquifers. The well diggers aim to dig a million wells for Bengaluru. The Mannu Vaddars will earn their livelihood using traditional skills , and the city will get water security.
REVIVE SUPPORT: Funds raised for the NGO Grama Vikas, Mulbagal: Rs 20,000 /- www.gramavikas.org
Manasi Karandikar and Ketaki Ghate set up their firm Oikos nearly 20 years ago, with a focus on ecological restoration. Having studied with Prof Prakash Gole at the Ecological Society, they set out to educate Indians about the need to restore ecosystems and habitats. Pioneers in their field, the duo have won many accolades for their path breaking work. In this episode of REVIVE they speak about the relevance of ecosystems conservation and restoration to public health. Drawing links between the current pandemic and the degradation of ecosystems they will walk us through what it would take to rebuild our natural world to protect our own health.
Where does love figure in a new paradigm? Sr Lucy, who started her journey as a Christian nun, has founded Maher ashram, a shelter for the homeless, that takes all the people shunned an rejected by mainstream society. What will it take to create a new society, that does not need to have seperate institutions such as Maher? How is our vision for a loving and inclusive society connected to Nature conservation?
For the session on Forgotten Greens, Shruti will be sharing about the uncultivated plants that grow in our immediate ecosystem and why the need for reviving the fast disappearing knowledge system is important. Often undermined, the uncultivated greens are ways to localize our food and medicinal system. She will also share some tips on urban foraging and how to add these wild edibles to our daily diet.
Jinarakshita is an ordained member (“Dhammachari”) of the Triratna Sangha, a Buddhist Sangha which aims at trying to engage with the Buddha’s teachings in the conditions of the modern world. He is a scientist by profession, and is actively engaged in research. The cultivation of a positive emotion is an important aspect of the Buddhist path. In the session he discussion the relevance of the cultivation of “metta” in the context of the corona pandemic. Metta, often translated as “loving-kindness” is an open, unconditional friendliness.
Prof Anil Gupta, founder of the Honey Bee network speaks about the creativity and innovative solutions available among grassroots communities, and how these can be fundamental to transforming the lives and landscapes of rural India , post Cover. He speaks about the reverse migration of labourers and how the skills that they have learnt during their time in urban areas can now be used to bring small scale and appropriate technology to their native lands.
Edmund Barrow is a Kenya based conservationist and author, whose book – Our Future in nature – highlights how important sacred trees and sacred groves are for us now; how this can be a positive force for good in conservation, our lifestyles and livelihoods; and how this helps us connect with nature. It helps us see how we can use sacred trees and groves to foster peace in our time together with greater awareness about our fragile planet.
Watch the whole session on Facebook: https://fb.watch/3sD9-oshMP/
Sunita Rao, founder of Vanastree, speaks about her journey in creating Huthina Betta, an organic forest farm in the forests of Sirsi, Karnataka. Sharing her challenges in single handedly managing a forest farm for two decades, Sunita speaks about the practical aspects of what it would mean for urban folks to return to life on the land.
We consume the news and we don’t realise that it consumes us. How do you take control of the information you consume to be able to lead a safe healthy and conscious life ? How do you navigate the flood of information coming you way..how do you know what to believe and what to discard ?
Watch the whole session on Facebook: https://fb.watch/3sDdNQwGfF/
COVID 19 has triggered a major shift in our economies ,and also in our personal finances and in our relationship with money. It has created uncertainty and anxiety and has forced us to question our sense of financial security. But will anything change post Covid? Will our realisations as individuals lead us to change as a society in the use and exploitation of our resources? Will we share more than we were doing before? Is there another way of organising economic activity so that it respects ecology and builds community?
Watch the whole session on Facebook: https://fb.watch/3sDhHcsGJ1/
Architect Durganand Balsavar, speaks about his experiences in disaster mitigation and rebuilding of communities.
To read about the entire Revive Talk with Mr. Durganand: https://www.e-coexist.org.in/activites/education/revive-talks/durganand-balsavar/
Prof Gurudas Nulkar, is a professor of Management at Symbiosis University, Pune and trustee of the Ecological Society, Pune. In search of an alternate economy, in this episode, Gurudas discusses his optimistic views on what could be a Post Covid way of life. He feels that an alternate economy needs participative democracy as an enabler.
Watch the whole session on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/watch/?v=553847018604506
What does a forest have to do with a pandemic? Do we need development at the cost of our forests? What exactly do the forests mean to the planet? Are we doing enough to keep mankind safe? Stalin Dayanand, an environmentalist with several years in conservation will be speaking about the importance of forest conservation to public health.
Watch the whole session on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/watch/?v=2447374088816687
Prof Prithwiraj Ghorpade started his career as an entrepreneur with his own packaging industry, which led him to become a business consultant. However his love of the land, pulled him to set up an organic farm twenty five years ago. How did this shift transform his life and what were the learnings he received from the land? In conversation with Manisha Gutman, Prithwi shares the wisdom he has gained over this time, the challenges he faced and the gifts he received from making this shift.
Watch the whole session on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/watch/?v=497548570969189